Monday, February 7, 2011

Tour: Storm of the i: An Artobiography by Tina Collen and Giveaway Opportunity

You may be wondering what an artiobiography is.  It's much like a memoir, but with really amazing fold-outs, drawings, paintings and lift-up flaps.  It's a piece of Art, not only in the written word, but for your eyes.

A heavy book, printed on excellent paper, and with brilliant inks, it only lends more to Tina's story.  It brings the story to life.

Storm of the i is about Tina's life, but most prominent, the turmoil in the relationship, or lack of, with her father.  A very angry man, even with a nice family, he did not form a close relationship with his daughter.  In fact, Tina never does understand why her father is always so angry with her.  She tries hard, and he ignores her. 

So when she moves out for college, the relationship, or lack of, only widens the gap.  Her mother really doesn't say alot, and reminds me of one of those women who are always in the passenger seat.  From college, Tina meets the love of her life, Barry. 

You know, I've always heard that a man will fall in love with someone similar to his mother, and a daughter similar to her father, characteristics and what not.  True? I have no idea.  But Barry, while not an angry man, is very overbearing and suffocating.  But Tina does try to make the relationship and marriage work, and they have two children together.  They have moved at this point to Colorado, far away from her parents, and still her father is angry.

Tina, still unsure of her marriage, throws herself into a new project - Pornage (erotic flower art), which receives rave reviews. Unfortunately, Tina's marriage to Barry collapses and they divorce.  Still with no word from her parents on her new art, she writes her father a letter explaining her feelings of his anger upon her life and her humiliation.  Therapeutic? Probably, but her father flies into a rage upon reading it and still does not contact her.

So, Tina starts another project - constructing silk plants and throwing herself into different workshops and even  She starts to see a shrink and realizes that she cannot move forward with her life until she forgives her father for the way he has treated her all of her life.  A really sad story of a woman who has taken what life has given her and tried her best to make it work, even with all of the roadblocks in her journey.  No happy ending, but Tina, I think has made some peace within herself and writing and putting together her memoir with her art is therapeutic.  Losing my father only four months ago, I connected with this book on many levels.  For years, we argued and took different times in our lives not speaking, but only in the past few years did we grow close, and I miss him dearly.  But I thank Tina for showing that it could have ended up differently, and my heart aches for her. 

A beautiful book with a heart-wrenching story, with a woman who is stronger than she thinks in my opinion.  Ironic? The book is dedicated to her father, who the book wouldn't be possible without.  I thought that was a really sweet gesture on her part, considering what he put her through.

If you love art or memoirs, you will totally love this book.   Award-winning memoir of an artist's difficult relationship with her father, overflowing with playfulness, humor and her art—including foldout paintings, cutouts and even a hand that comes out of the pages to give the reader a fortune cookie with a message inside.



  • AWARDS: Benjamin Franklin Silver medal for Memoir 
  • 1st Prize CIPA Tech Award for layout & design (not shown) 
  • Bronze IPPY for Regional Non-fiction  
  • The Gold EVVY for Autobiography

To purchase a personally autographed copy of Storm of the i go to and write down how you'd like it signed in the comment box. Books are also available at Barnes & Noble, Borders, Amazon and can be ordered at your favorite bookstore.


We’re giving an autographed book away in a contest, asking people to leave a comment answering this question:

Oftentimes the objects we hold onto contain cryptic clues that point towards something deeper about ourselves. Take a look around your house (or your room) at the things with which you have surrounded yourself. Is there anything you are still hanging onto that seems to contain a hidden message for you? What do you think it is?








  1. I have a couple of plates my kids made when they were in grade school. They are in college now and I know that the plates bring back nice memories of when they were little and they loved making things for us.
    mce1011 AT aol DOT com

  2. I'm one to hold onto things so we have a house of homemade items. My daughter has done many x-stitch item s over the years. We have quilts galore and homemade rugs. Thanks for the wonderful giveaway

    dianad8008 AT gmail DOT com


The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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